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VICTON returned to the stage mid-November with their eighth mini-album, Choice, and their new single Virus. However, you might notice that the lineup for this comeback is one less compared to their last comeback from 6 months ago with Stupid O’Clock. Heo Chan voluntarily withdrew himself from the group following news that he was involved in a DUI investigation in October. IST Entertainment later confirmed Heo Chan’s departure from the group and that VICTON would continue as a six member group, though five for the time being as Ha Seung Woo is currently carrying out his military enlistment.
I found the piercing taps at the start of Virus to be quite intriguing and I wished the song followed through with that. Instead, that intriguingness was quickly lost upon a quick realisation that Virus delved into a generic verse, consisting of deep whoops whoops (is there a technical term of this?), marching drums and pretty standard vocal work. The chorus was a decent return to form, with the song fully embracing its electro R&B profile. I did wish the melodies were stronger to really pull you into Virus. However, the second half of the chorus had a nice oomph to it, thanks to the members’ vocals, that really helped deliver the chorus and give it potential. The later sections of the song, such as the bridge and the final post-post-chorus sequence (I will touch on this a bit later) were definitely the biggest highlights for me in Virus. The way VICTON glided into the bridge was really well done. I also quite enjoyed the way the bridge ramped back up in a paced manner via the use of percussion, Sejun’s high note, synths and then finishing it off with an impressive high note from Seungsik. The biggest question for Virus is Do Hanse’s rapping. While his part was definitely impressive and it shows us that he can coolly deliver a rap sequence, his overly raspy rapping voice and the intense/abrasive EDM just doesn’t fit into the bigger picture that is Virus. I am not too sure what was happening there and I find it to be quite a disappointment. Luckily, Do Hanse does recover later on in Virus by delivering (alongside Subin) that smooth sequence just after the final chorus. Overall, Virus was a decent track. I did wish the verses were more interesting and Do Hanse’s rap was more fitting for the song. But the rest of the song was done well and a nice enough listen.
The music video is one of those videos where it is just closeup shots and choreography. While there could be some sort of meaning behind the individual scenes (some were definitely intriguing enough), there really wasn’t much opportunity to really appreciate and try to understand the individual scenes. And it didn’t seem like there was much to tie everything together. I did like the dominance of a certain colour to everyone’s individual scene and I liked they didn’t use vivid colours like other KPOP videos tend to do. The producers for this music video chose pretty earthy colours for the most part. As for the colours that usually aren’t connected to the earth (i.e. the blue backing in the featured image, some of the green and Do Hanse’s black background), the producers went with accents and tones that really muted the colours, complementing the earthy tones to the video. The contrast was also a nice touch, as we can see in this post’s featured image.
I ended up quite enjoying the performance for this comeback. While nothing really stood out (nor is there much to mention from the routine), the piece definitely showcases the group’s performance potential with the sharp and clean movements and synchronisation I could see from the stage performances. I wished there was more of the performance, just so there is a more talk about
Song – 7/10
Music Video – 6/10
Performance – 7.5/10
Overall Rating – 6.8/10